Gonzalo Higuain thought he could play in the MLS with "a cigarette in his mouth" before confessing the league has surprised him.

The Argentine was one of the big names to join up with David Beckham's Inter Miami side in America.

His arrival though has not been able to help the MLS outfit, who have failed to impress in their debut year.

Higuain has played in Spain, Italy and England, enjoying huge success on the way.

He has compared the MLS to Italian football which is why he has "suffered".

The 33-year-old said on Christian Vieri's Twitch channel Bobo TV : "I thought I would come here and play with a cigarette in my mouth and, instead, it is difficult.

Gonzalo Higuain has been surprised by the standard in the MLS
Gonzalo Higuain has been surprised by the standard in the MLS

"It is a tough league. I learned that it is similar to Italian football.

"In Spain and England it is easier to do well, while in Italy, if you do not know the league, you suffer."

Higuain's difficult start to life in Florida begun with a missed penalty on his debut as Inter Miami lost 3-0 to Philadelphia Union in September.

Things have improved somewhat since with the Argentine scoring four times in six games.

Higuain has played for Real Madrid, Napoli, Juventus and Chelsea during a trophy-laden career.

His second stint in Turin was not as successful as his first however and he admits he struggled with motivation.

"I couldn't find the right determination and serenity outside of football. I had nothing more to give," he added.

"A great friend of mine like Buffon told me: 'If you no longer feel that fire inside in training, if you no longer feel the determination to be at high levels, you have to go'.

"Football gave me a lot but it was time to say enough and find joy and fun and new football in a city that surprised me because it was wonderful."

Higuain's current employers continue to try and attract world class talent to Miami.

Club owner Jorge Mas has spoken openly about his ambitions to lure Lionel Messi across the Atlantic and remains "optimistic" a deal can be struck in the future.

“David and I have been working really hard, we have aspirations of bringing the best players here and Leo Messi is a generational player, arguably the best player of all time,” he told the Miami Herald.

“I am optimistic Messi will play in an Inter Miami shirt because I think it will complete the legacy of the greatest player in our generation and will meet with the ambitions of the owners of Inter Miami to build a world-class team.”